Listen: We get it. Scraping off every li’l bit of ice from your car windows can be a pain. And, what with it generally being, you know, cold outside when car ice forms, it can be all too tempting to carve out a peephole in the windshield and be on your merry way.
But the Prairie Village Police Department is reminding residents that uncleared car window ice can pose a serious safety threat to your fellow residents on the roads:
In cooler weather it is important for drivers to allow a few extra minutes each morning to clear their windows of condensation, ice or snow before driving. The dangers associated with driving a vehicle without a clear view to the front and to the sides can be illustrated by a 2010 accident involving a car and a bicyclist in Prairie Village. The bicyclist, who had the right of way, was severely injured after being hit by a car whose driver did not see the bicycle approaching the intersection because the car’s passenger side windows were obstructed. The driver had not cleaned the passenger side windows of condensation that developed overnight and was unable to see to her right. This accident was entirely preventable and could have had an even more tragic outcome.
Kansas traffic ordinances state:
- No person shall drive any motor vehicle with any sign, poster or other nontransparent material upon the front windshield, side wings, side or rear windows of such vehicle which substantially obstructs, obscures or impairs the driver’s clear view of the highway or any intersecting highway.
- No person shall drive any motor vehicle with a damaged front windshield or side or rear windows which substantially obstructs the driver’s clear view of the highway or any intersecting highway.
- The windshield on every motor vehicle shall be equipped with a device for cleaning rain, snow or other moisture from the windshield, which device shall be so constructed as to be controlled or operated by the driver of the vehicle.
- Every windshield wiper upon a motor vehicle shall be maintained in good working order.
- The driver of a motor vehicle which is not equipped with a windshield shall wear an eye-protective device.